Web site renovation (again)

I have been busy for the last couple of days rebuilding my web site over at Zenfolio. Zenfolio has hosted my photos for years and it does a great job at that. What I didn’t realize until I attended the Zenfolio Zoom workshop in Dallas recently is that Zenfolio has added a lot of new features and it’s now possible to build my entire site there.

The new site at Zenfolio

Now the site as it was over at WordPress.com was working okay, for the most part. But I had some complaints. Wordpress is blogging site, not a photography site, and my photos never really displayed as well there as I wanted them to. Zenfolio is a photo site so I know my photos will display beautifully and I have lots of control over that, and that’s the most important thing.

So I’ve rebuilt my main web site (http://william-porter.net) over at Zenfolio. That’s where you’ll see info about my portrait and wedding services (and other services), my portfolio, find contact info, and so on. And as it has been for years, it’s where clients will go to review their proofs, order prints, etc.

One very serious problem with Zenfolio at the moment is that its design does not support mobile devices well. That was one of the main reasons that I went to WordPress in the first site. As a photographer, what matters more to me: that my site displays well on iPhones or that my photos display better on real computer screens? It’s a dilemma but I had to come down on the side of the best display of the photos on real computers. I am hoping that the next big upgrade from Zenfolio (which is supposed to add support for HTML5) will resolve this issue so I can eat my cake and have it to.

Back to Blogger

One thing can’t transfer, at least not yet: the blog. There’s a rumor that Zenfolio will be providing a blogging feature very soon. I’m plenty busy and perhaps I should just have left the blog over at WordPress.com and waited to see what Zenfolio comes up with. But it’s hard for me to imagine that Zenfolio’s version 1 blogging feature is going to be as good as WordPress, or Blogger, or Typepad or Tumblr.

So I’m moving back to Blogger, Google’s blogging service, at least for the time being. It’s very good. I’m not yet completely sure whether I like the Lightbox feature for photos but some people are crazy about it. Click on the picture of Cinderella’s carriage to see for yourself.

Cinderella’s carriage at the Dallas Arboretum

I like the fact that Blogger integrates closely with Google+, which I expect to use heavily as soon as it becomes available for Google Apps for Your Domain. (I have a personal Google+ account now but don’t want to use it for my photography.)

There’s a problem with the move to Blogger. As of this writing I’ve only imported my 2011 posts from WordPress; my earlier posts will be imported over the next couple of days, as soon as I can deal with some technical problems. But the larger problem is that the imported posts aren’t going to format very nicely here. They’re readable and the photos look fine, but the text in the posts — especially the section titles — doesn’t look quite right. For the moment, I’m stumped.


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